. . . then down to Alice Springs where I was deposited at an advantageous hiking spot south of town my confidence once more on full.
The striking thing about this
journey was the wonderful storms; Fantastic electrical cloudburst all around
me, building in the late afternoon and thundering all night, a welcome
relief after months of unremitting drought and sweltering heat.
Two rides south of Alice found me monumentally marooned at Kulgera, a roadhouse and nothing more. With night rapidly falling I rolled my swag under a gigi tree and spent the most blissful night of rest in many a long year. Not a drop of rain fell on me only cool gentle gust of wind, flickering lightening and booming thunder lulled me to sleep.
Instantly dreaming I found myself among the young elk far up Bob creek; like statues they stood beside gin clear water. Against the cutbank on the blue gravel creek bottom Steelhead appeared like long silver ingots winking in and out of sight as cloud shadows scudded through the timber.
Perhaps because of the nights atmospheric tumult my dreams began to pick up speed. Soon nocturnal visions pinwheeled me faster and faster through scenes of the past. At once I was treading down a brown bear path on South East Alaska's Cape Poule surrounded by towering Sitka Spruce. Before the sweet scent of licorice fern could be properly placed I was younger still, now crouched over the cap-rail of the stout shrimp trawler Miss Trudy bringing to hand from forty fathoms the stunning Kitty Mitchell Grouper its brilliant canary yellow spots startling against its royal BluePurple coat.
I was definitely addled, tho refreshed when next I awoke to the song of the bell bird and growing heat of what promised to be another Central Australian scorcher. Even the ants were staying below today. After brewing and finishing a canteen cup of coffee I strode out to the highway and promptly got a ride all the way to Adelaide . . . confident now that I would journey to Lourenco Marques, closer to the ancient Coelacanth . . .
from 'Tales of the Worried Shrimp'